Evolution of dioecy and sex chromosomes
Separate sexes and sex chromosomes have evolved repeatedly and independently in many plant lineages. While relatively few plant species have well differentiated, heteromorphic sex chromosomes, most species have homomorphic sex chromosomes with unknown sex chromosome system (XX/XY or ZZ/ZW). We use genome and transcriptome sequencing approaches to identify sex determination systems in plants and study expression changes associated with the evolution of separate sexes. We combine these approaches with ecological experiments in the field and greenhouse to assess how environmental factors shape the expression and fitness of the different sexes.